The Sunshine State is joining Victoria and the nation’s capital in banning the Commonwealth Bank’s school-banking program.
Queensland minister for education Grace Grace announced her department will not renew its agreement with CBA when it ends on 31 July 2021.
The moves come off the back of ASIC’s landmark investigation into the school-banking program, which has been dominated by CBA’s Dollarmites, released in late 2020.
The two-year review found that banks are selling such programs as a “community service” when in reality their purpose is for “commercial gain”.
|Sponsored by Eaton Vance
Eaton Vance: Active vs. Passive in EMD
Providers do not effectively disclose that school-banking programs are linked to a broader customer-acquisition strategy, ASIC found, adding that young children are vulnerable consumers and are exposed to sophisticated advertising and marketing tactics by the banks.
In canning the program, Grace said Queensland students already receive extensive financial literacy education and school-banking programs had questionable benefits.
“This decision is in the best interests of our students. Our schools are now giving them skills to help manage their money responsibly while being cybersafe and avoiding the potential pitfalls modern technology can bring,” she said.
Bendigo Bank also operated a school-banking program in Queensland but withdrew its program prior to the release of the ASIC report.
Victoria banned the program at the start of 2021, replacing it with new teaching resources and tips for students on taxation, and ways to identify and avoid scams.
The Australian Capital Territory will implement the ban in July.